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Professor Chloe Orkin receives MBE in the King’s Birthday Honours


We are delighted to congratulate our very own Professor Chloe Orkin, who has been recognised with an MBE for services to NHS in the 2024 King’s Birthday Honours list.

The announcement of Professor Orkin’s MBE recognises her outstanding achievements as a world-leading HIV researcher, clinician, and medical, LGBTQ+ and disability leader.

The announcement of Chloe’s MBE falls in Pride Month, and there’s no better occasion to recognise Chloe’s fantastic achievements to medicine and equality, as well as her role as a prominent clinician activist leader for HIV communities and a medical, LGBTQ+ and disability leader.

Chloe Orkin (Director of the SHARE Research Collaborative) is Professor of Infection and Inequities at Queen Mary and a Consultant Physician at Barts Health NHS Trust.

Chloe’s pioneering research led to the licensing and implementation of the first-ever injectable treatment for HIV. The treatment improves the quality of life for people living with HIV – for the first time, people living with HIV could choose to receive treatment through an injection every two months, rather than take daily pills. You can learn more about the research SHARE conduct here.

While Chair of the British HIV Association in 2017, she spearheaded the UK arm of the ‘Undetectable = Untransmissible’ (U=U) campaign, which highlighted that there is zero risk of HIV transmission for people taking effective antiretroviral treatment. The global campaign has been transformative in reducing stigma for people living with HIV.

Her ground-breaking research on the clinical features of mpox has shaped our understanding of the condition, and her work has set new standards and guidelines in the treatment of these conditions.

Orkin is equally committed to equity for healthcare professionals. She was the first LGBTQ+ President of the Medical Women’s Federation, the largest organisation representing medical women in the UK.

Chloe believes strongly in visible representation. She has spoken openly as a medical woman and an LGBTQ+ doctor. In 2022, Chloe wrote a piece for BMJ Leader discussing, for the first time openly, about her experiences of living with an invisible disability. Again, Chloe’s strong belief in visible representation made her a leader to disabled doctors and may others living with both visible and invisible disability.

Ove the past five years, Chloe has led the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry (FMD) on Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Lead as the EDI Lead and Athena SWAN Chair.

To mark her MBE, Chloe has written a lovely piece in the BMJ Leader detailing her experience with receiving this award. She has also kindly compiled a list of activism resources, available at the bottom of this page.

On receiving her MBE, Professor Orkin said:

“‘Serving the NHS for the past 26 years has been an enormous privilege, and it means a great deal that my contribution has been deemed valuable. By seeing someone like me receiving an MBE, I hope that others will see that they too can be recognised for their contributions to society. I look forward to serving my patients and colleagues for the rest of my career.”

Professor Sir Mark Caulfield, VP Health at Queen Mary University of London said:

“I am delighted to congratulate Chloe on receiving an MBE for her services to the NHS. Not only is Chloe an exceptional clinician and researcher, but she is also a role model and leader for many groups who have faced – and continue to face – challenge and discrimination across the world.

Chloe spearheaded change toward greater equality in our Faculty, overseeing our successful application for a Gold Athena SWAN award in medicine in 2023.

Congratulations, Chloe. This is hugely well deserved.”

Professor Yvonne Gilleece, Chair of the British HIV Association, said: 

“As a past chair of the British HIV Association, Chloe has contributed so much to the development of new treatments for HIV and worked consistently to champion those facing stigma because of their HIV status, gender or ethnicity. We are delighted to see her recognised for her contribution to both medicine and society.”

Notable research

  • Chloe was global lead author for the FLAIR study, which evaluated the first ever long-acting injectable treatment for HIV. She led a further study, which showed that the drug could be given safely without the need for a month of oral therapy at the start.
  • Chloe has also led a study that developed a clinical predictive tool to identify which patients are most likely to benefit from long-acting therapy.
  • She led the ILANA study, an anti-racist, anti-sexist and anti-ageist protocol, which was published in BMJ Open and is referenced in the World Health Organisation Toolkit.
  • Her ground-breaking research on clinical features of mpox (formerly monkeypox) published in the NEJM and in The Lancet on the features in women, in people with advanced HIV and on re-infections has shaped our understanding of the condition, and her work has set new standards and guidelines for its treatment.
  • She has published extensively on health equity and on equity in the academic workforce (see below)

Leadership and achievements

  • Chloe is an experienced science and leadership communicator and has spoken on several podcasts on medical leadership (The Medical Women Podcast, The Dorothy ProjectYou are not a frog) and on Monkeypox.
  • She participated in Gareth Thomas’ HIV and me The clip of her explaining U=U (undetectable=untransmissible) went viral with over 400K views.
  • Chloe is featured on the SHAW Trust Disability Power 100 (2023), a list that recognises the most influential disabled people in the UK.
  • She is featured on the UK and US Visible Lesbian 100, a list that recognises lesbian women who are shaping our culture and who, through their incredible work, lift up those in our community who are most marginalised. It was created in 2020 to mark the first ever Lesbian Visibility Week.

Activism and Research Resources

Chloe has compiled a list of resources relating to her work on HIV, mpox, LGBT+ activism, and women in leadership.  

HIV, Mpox and LGBTQ+ activism

Women in leadership and intersectionality

Gender equity


Medical Women Podcast on leadership: The Medical Women Podcast: Episode 4: Stepping into leadership with Professor Chloe Orkin on Apple Podcasts 

YANAF podcast: The Glass Slipper and Other Challenges for Women in Medicine – You Are Not a Frog 


  1. Cevik M… Orkin CGender disparities in coronavirus disease 2019 clinical trial leadership.
  2. Clin Microbiol Infect. 2021 Jul;27(7):1007-1010. doi: 10.1016/j.cmi.2020.12.025. Epub 2021 Jan 5.
  3. Howe A… Orkin CGender and ethnicity intersect to reduce participation at a large European hybrid HIV conference.BMJ Lead. 2023 Nov 8:leader-2023-000848. doi: 10.1136/leader-2023-000848.
  4. Wan YI… Orkin CClinical research in the NHS: a cross-sectional study of research engagement during the monkeypox pandemic; BMJ Leader 2023;7:1–7. doi:10.1136/leader-2023-000812
  5. Howe A, Orkin C, Apea V. The under-representation of racially minoritised doctors in academic general practice training. BJGP Open. 2023 Dec 21:BJGPO.2023.0136. doi: 10.3399/BJGPO.2023.0136. Online ahead of print.


  1. Orkin C. Reflections and intersections: disability, ‘ableism’ and metamodern leadership. 
  2. Bedside Reading podcast Unwell Women (buzzsprout.com)
  3. Saloniki E-C… Orkin CStaff disability data in UK higher education: Evidence from EDI reports; Med Humanit 2024;0:1–6. doi:10.1136/medhum-2024-012892

Peer-reviewed publications on health equity

  1. Farooq H…Orkin C Study protocol: the ILANA study – exploring optimal implementation strategies for long-acting antiretroviral therapy to ensure equity in clinical care and policy for women, racially minoritised people and older people living with HIV in the UK – a qualitative multiphase longitudinal study design . BMJ Open 2023;13:e070666. doi:10.1136/ bmjopen-2022-070666
  2. Apea VJ… Orkin CM, Prowle JR. Ethnicity and outcomes in patients hospitalised with COVID-19 infection in East London: an observational cohort study. BMJ Open. 2021 Jan 17;11(1):e042140. doi: 10.1136/bmjopen-2020-042140.
  3. Wan YI…Orkin CM, Prowle JR. Ethnic disparities in hospitalisation and hospital-outcomes during the second wave of COVID-19 infection in east London. Sci Rep. 2022 Mar 8;12(1):3721. doi: 10.1038/s41598-022-07532-6.
  4. Gupta N, Gilleece Y, Orkin CImplementing U=U in clinical practice: results of a British HIV association members survey. Sex Transm Infect. 2021 Dec;97(8):619-620. doi: 10.1136/sextrans-2020-054462. Epub 2020 Mar 5.
  5. Orkin C, Goddard SL. Enrolling pregnant women with HIV into clinical trials. Lancet HIV. 2020 May;7(5):e302-e303. doi: 10.1016/S2352-3018(20)30078-3. 
  6. Finnerty F, Azad Y, Orkin CHostile health-care environment could increase migrants’ risk of HIV and prevent access to vital services. Lancet HIV. 2019 Feb;6(2):e76. doi: 10.1016/S2352-3018(19)30004-9

This article has been taken from Queen Mary University of London.